Latest posts: Gluten Free Resource

Adventures in Gluten-Free Breadmaking, By Karin Joyce

By Chris Bennett | 06/08/2012 | Posted in Gluten Free Resource, Kitchen

Here at ‘Home of the House Proud’, we’re delighted to introduce Karin Joyce’s latest blog post. As regular visitors will know, Karin is one of our wonderful coeliac ambassadors and she regularly shares details about how she copes living with the condition. This week, Karin’s been testing out a Morphy Richards breadmaker, which allows her to cook delicious gluten-free bread at home.

When I first was diagnosed with coeliac disease, a source of sadness for me was the loss of “normal” bread. I love bread. In every shape and size. When I lived in France in 2005, I got a baguette nearly every day. It exfoliated the roof of my mouth but I didn’t care! The pain was worth it. Bread was good.

Now I find out that bread is the enemy. And one of the worst parts is that the crucial ingredient that makes bread bread is GLUTEN. Making gluten-free bread is not easy. You seem to either wind up with something that weighs 37 pounds or tastes like wool. Neither option is overly appealing!

In the first few weeks of going gluten-free, I passed on the store bought gluten-free alternatives. Mainly because I couldn’t rationalise the price! Most store-bought, gluten-free bread is 2-3 times the cost of their “normal” alternative. £2.89 for a teeny loaf of moderately edible bread is not my idea of fun. For the sake of taste-testing, I did buy a loaf of Genius bread. It’s not too horrible but I still can’t justify the cost. When I received my starter kits from Juvela and Glutafin there were small loaves of bread and bread rolls included in the kits. Again, these samples were not half bad. I did find that they were best eaten toasted which was fine by me as toast and tea is my usual breakfast. I could have toast again! Rejoice!

Juvela and Glutafin are prescription only brands, however. I wanted to MAKE my own bread to not only save money but to be able to eat it fresh and warm and say, “I MADE that bread!” I gave the Juvela Fibre Mix a whirl without the use of a breadmaker and lo and behold…I created BREAD. It was light and lucious and didn’t cost a thing! (Well, I had received the mix for free in my starter kit) I will most definitely try this method again when I am able to fill my prescription.

But I’m funny. I like to make things with my own two hands (or my own breadmaker) by measuring and mixing, not pouring it from a mix. I guess I’m not funny…I’m a control freak with a need for constant reassurance!

Last week, I unpacked the Morphy Richards breadmaker that I received as a contributor to the Home of the House Proud site. I was so excited as I washed the baking pan and lovingly “seasoned” it for its first trial run. I used the following recipe for my first attempt in my adventures in gluten-free breadmaking:

  • 300ml tepid water
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 120g Juvela white mix/120g Glutafin white mix/120g Doves Farm White bread flour
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp yeast

Method:

Add the water, oil and salt into the pan. Add the flour mixtures. Sprinkle the sugar followed by the yeast onto the top of the flour mixture. Place the pan into the breadmachine. Use the Gluten-Free programme. Wait, watch and hope for the best.

The gluten-free programme takes approximately 2hrs 35 minutes. I regularly kept peering through the window to check on the progress. It didn’t look promising for a while. There wasn’t much rising going on initially. In fact, most of the progress on it looking like a normal loaf of bread didn’t take place until the last 45 minutes or so. Doesn’t it look scrummy?

 

The finished product? Well, IT TASTED GREAT!!!!! I couldn’t wait for the requisite 30 minutes cooling time. I yanked the pan out of the breadmachine, turned the loaf out (it actually slid right out), placed it on a make-shift rack to cool and stared at it. I tapped it (sounded like good bread should) and then, after about 10 minutes, I cut off the end and had a taste! Very, very nice! Not at all like wool and quite light, thank you very much! Have a look!

Pretty huh?! I was rather proud of it! The hubby approved and Little Miss scarfed it right down. 2 votes of approval right there. Now, my recipe is slightly unorthodox. It was not perfect as it was a mixture of 3 types of gluten-free flour and I went off the rails to make that up. But it was tasty and went down a treat AND was gluten-free. It lasted the night with a few slices left for my toast in the morning. Result! 

However, being the control freak that I am, I was not satisfied with this first attempt. I felt that I wasn’t doing my readers and any possible gluten-free readers, a service by relying on prescription-only mixes. So, I set up the bread maker the next day to make another attempt at gluten-free breadmaking using Doves Farm flour and the recipe on the back of their White Bread Flour package. A package that anyone (in the UK) can buy. Tune in later this week to see the results! In the meantime, enjoy this first attempt in adventures in gluten-free breadmaking. I know I did!

My name is Karin Joyce and I am a freelance writer and parent blogger. I am the author of Cafe Bebe, a parenting website where I share my adventures in motherhood, marriage, mealtimes and moi. I am the mother of an energetic and entertaining two year old and the wife of an Englishman who is fully supportive of my coeliac diagnosis. I will be a regular contributor to Morphy Richards ‘Home of the House Proud’ where I will share posts, tips, recipes and reviews.

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Food Shopping as a Coeliac, by Karin Joyce

By Chris Bennett | 06/08/2012 | Posted in Gluten Free Resource, Kitchen

‘Home of the House Proud’s’  lovely coeliac ambassador, Karin Joyce has been telling us how her life has changed since being diagnosed with coeliac disease last year. In her second blog post, Karin explains how she now has to shop for food.

The Next Step Forward…

After being undergoing a gastroscopy as a formality for subsequent coeliac diagnosis, I began eating a gluten-free diet the next day. The idea of going gluten-free was a bit daunting. I had previously been entirely too fond of gluten-filled food items like pasta, bread and more pasta. What was I going to do? Whatever was I going to eat?

Of course, there are tons of naturally gluten-free foods like fruits and vegetables, meats, potatoes and rice. The mine-field that is gluten-free living is in searching out the hidden gluten in things that you’d never guess had gluten. For example, oven chip: made of potatoes correct? Yes, oven chips are made of potato but certain brands and styles will coat the oven chips in a dusting of flour and/or spices to make them crispier when baked or to prevent them from sticking together thus rendering them inedible for coeliacs.

Your first point of call, when planning your first gluten-free meals and shopping trips should be to check the Coeliac UK, Juvela and Glutafin sites. Registering with these sites will allow you to receive starter kits including written information about appropriate gluten-free food items and samples of prescription items such as flour, pizza bases, pasta and bread. Coeliac UK will also send you the Food and Drink Guide which will become an essential part of finding gluten-free food items while out and about and for shopping.

Juvela Prescription

Every major grocery chain will have a “free-from” section. Not every item is a gluten-free item but all of the items are targeted to those individuals with food allergies and intolerances. Thankfully you can purchase staple items like bread, pasta, flours, pizza bases, biscuits, crackers, crumpets and more. What is unsettling, however, is the price of most gluten-free items which is double and sometimes triples that of the non-gluten-free alternatives. If you’re desperate for a bagel or a crumpet though, you do have options.

I have found that through process of elimination, looking up specific items that are favourites and lots of label reading, in a relatively short span of time you will establish a list of items that you know are gluten-free and become staples on your shopping list. There are some items you may have to pay more for but for the sake of convenience that expense may be worth it.

A happy result of adopting a gluten-free diet is that I have gotten stuck into the kitchen and cooking again. I gave our cupboards an overhaul by clearing out all of the items with gluten in them and started fresh with gluten-free pantry items like flours, pasta, baking powder, gravy granules and soups. I’ve taken old recipes and adapted them to suit my gluten-free needs and my husband has been exceptionally supportive of the changes. This support is essential for a smooth transition to a gluten-free life.

Taking the next step forward can be a bit daunting but with help from organisations like Coeliac UK, your favourite grocery chain’s free-from section, a bit of label reading and some kitchen re-organisation you can confidently take that step into gluten-free living and hopefully never look back.

My name is Karin Joyce and I am a freelance writer and parent blogger. I am the author of Cafe Bebe, a parenting website where I share my adventures in motherhood, marriage, mealtimes and moi. I am the mother of an energetic and entertaining two year old and the wife of an Englishman who is fully supportive of my coeliac diagnosis. I will be a regular contributor to Morphy Richards ‘Home of the House Proud’ where I will share posts, tips, recipes and reviews.

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Mark Coeliac Awareness Week with Morphy Richards!

By Chris Bennett | 10/07/2012 | Posted in Gluten Free Resource, Kitchen

This week is ‘Coeliac Awareness Week’ and to mark this very special week in the calendar, ‘Home of the House Proud’ has teamed up with gluten-free food specialists (and our friends) Juvela to giveaway a fantastic Morphy Richards breadmaker and Juvela products – because of the wonders of the breadmaker and gluten-free flour, Coeliac sufferers don’t have to miss out on fresh homemade bread!

We’ve got a Morphy Richards Compact breadmaker to giveaway to the first-placed winner along with four bags of Juvela White All – Purpose Flour Mix, breadmaker book and apron. Three runners up will also net themselves two bags of the flour mix, the breadmaker book and apron.

To be in with a chance of winning this great prize, simply follow the Morphy Richards  Twitter account (http://www.twitter.com/LoveYourMorphy) and watch out for instructions – Good Luck! The competition will close at 6pm on Sunday 22nd May.

On ‘Home of the House Proud’, we have a section dedicated to everything that is gluten-free and work closely with several Coeliac ambassadors to bring you recipes, help and information about the disease. One of our ambassadors is the wonderful Karin Joyce and she has a fantastic blog – go check it out! 

Watch out for further gluten-free blog posts this week!

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A Roast Dinner Gluten-Free Style, By Karin Joyce – Gluten-Free Resource

By Chris Bennett | 03/07/2012 | Posted in Gluten Free Resource, Kitchen

Here at ‘Home of the House Proud’ we love a traditional roast dinner with Yorkshire puddings (we are based in Yorkshire after all), but what happens if you’re diagnosed with Coeliac Disease? Can you still enjoy a Sunday roast? Well, the answer is yes! Check out our Coeliac ambassador’s (Karin Joyce) blog on the topic, Karin recently made a roast dinner and it was a huge success.

In my new efforts to embrace my coeliac disease, I have tried to focus on doing more cooking in order to not rely on convenience foods. It’s been a challenge turning away from “old reliables” and resorting to takeaways. I had become lazy in the kitchen which has resulted in much poundage being added to my frame and a thin layer of dust on most of my cooking accessories. It became too easy to ring up the hubby and ask him to pick up a pizza on the way home. It was time to stop!

After a full make-over for the kitchen, a thorough cleaning and organising of everything in the kitchen and a lot of research and investigation on my part, I threw myself back into the kitchen to discover the wonders of gluten-free recipes. I’ve really enjoyed it! But it’s one thing to be able to do this in the comfort of your own kitchen and an entirely different thing to expect others to do the same. We visit my inlaws once a week for dinner and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to enjoy the dinners my mother-in-law makes as there’s always a small item in the meal that renders it inedible for me. I know it’s hard for others to understand just how pervasive gluten is in many everyday dishes and items so I thought I would show my inlaws that a gluten-free dinner doesn’t have to be horrible.

I decided to tackle a roast chicken dinner on Sunday. On the menu would be: chicken (strangely enough), roast potatoes, roast carrots and parsnips, mashed potatoes (for the FIL). Playing for the gluten-free side: gravy, stuffing and Yorkshire pudding. I didn’t think pudding was necessary as the FIL has diabetes and ice cream covers the bases for diabetics, toddlers and coeliacs alike. Also contributing to the overall yumminess of the meal was gluten-free organic chicken stock cubes which accompanied the chicken and gravy. It’s easy to forget that a stock cube has to be gluten-free as well.

My secret to a lovely, moist roast chicken is to put butter under the skin on the breast and give the bird a nice old massage with the butter before whacking it in the oven. I also scattered peeled & sliced baby onions and garlic cloves around and under the bird and then topped it all off with 500ml of GF organic chicken stock (Kallo). Place all of this in a covered roasting tin at approximately 200 degreed C and cook for the time listed on the packaging of the bird. Be sure to use a meat thermometer to check the bird near the end of the roasting. Approximately every 30 minutes or so I recommend basting the bird to keep the meat nice and juicy. There’s nothing worse than a dry old bird!

To make my GF gravy I relied on Bisto Best Chicken gravy granules to thicken the chicken juices and stock left in the roasting pan. So sue me! It made a lovely and rich gravy which complimented the meat and other side dishes well. According to the Coeliac UK Food and Drink Guide 2010, Bisto BEST gravies are suitable for coeliacs. This is only for the Bisto BEST range. The juices and stock from the bird were also amplified by Kallo Free Range Organic Chicken Stock cubes which are naturally gluten-free.

For stuffing, which is Little Miss’ favourite, I could have gone totally home-made-y and used a gluten-free loaf of bread and made my own breadcrumbs and then made my own stuffing which is actually super lovely. I wasn’t in the mood for super lovely though and I mainly wanted to show the family that stuffing in a box, like they have, is just as tasty gluten-free.

I chose Mrs. Crimble’s stuffing. It’s the same old, same old that you get in a box of Paxo or Tesco’s own but gluten-free. You even “just add water” and some oil and bake it exactly the same. Simples! Just as tasty and just as edible for me!

And finally for the Yorkshire pudding. Well, there’s just no escaping that Yorkshire pudding isn’t quite the same gluten-free. But ultimately, it’s exactly the same recipe but it won’t rise much. There is another recipe you can use which I found courtesy of Juvela but it involves a slightly different method and is a bit more fiddly. I’m not sure if it rises nice and fluffy but I will find out soon and report on the results.

I use Doves Farm gluten-free flour which is a life-saver. I simply make a batter with Doves Farm GF flour, 2 eggs and milk and mix to a runny consistency. Then heat the oil in the pan as usual, pour in the batter to the smoking hot tin and whack it into the oven for 20-30 minutes. It’s a bit more of a thick pancake consistency and doesn’t have the nice, crispy edges but it tastes the same. Anyone else who knows another solution, let me know. I believe if you use individual muffin/Yorkie tins, you may resolve some of the rising issue.

So, roast chicken dinner Chez Bebe was a resounding success with 3 of the major accompaniments having been replaced with gluten-free alternatives. My inlaws seemed pleasantly surprised and I believe I have made some educational in-roads which is always good. And I’ve proved to myself that I can indeed cook a lovely roast dinner for our family.

My name is Karin Joyce and I am a freelance writer and parent blogger. I am the author of Cafe Bebe, a parenting website where I share my adventures in motherhood, marriage, mealtimes and moi. I am the mother of an energetic and entertaining two year old and the wife of an Englishman who is fully supportive of my coeliac diagnosis. I will be a regular contributor to Morphy Richards ‘Home of the House Proud’ where I will share posts, tips, recipes and reviews.

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Introducing Karin Joyce…

By Chris Bennett | 21/06/2012 | Posted in Gluten Free Resource

At ‘Home of the House Proud’, we’ve recently launched a section of the blog especially for coeliac sufferers. We’re working with two lovely individuals and Juvela to help provide information, advice and recipes (especially fresh bread recipes) for those people out there that have a gluten intolerance. On Monday, we introduced Carol, today, we’d like to introduce you to Karin…

Karin Joyce

My name is Karin Joyce and I am a freelance writer and parent blogger. I am the author of Cafe Bebe, a parenting website where I share my adventures in motherhood, marriage, mealtimes and moi. I am the mother of an energetic and entertaining two year old and the wife of an Englishman who is fully supportive of my coeliac diagnosis. I will be a regular contributor to Morphy Richards ‘Home of the House Proud’ where I will share posts, tips, recipes and reviews.  

For the last two years I haven’t been feeling myself. Bloated, uncomfortable and with a belly that could rival a woman who’s six months pregnant, I knew that something was not right. However, even after mentioning it several times to the GP, I never really forced the issue with my GP. I felt embarrassed and just thought that I needed to eat less and exercise more. True, I had put on more than the average amount of weight with my pregnancy and as a result had a significant abdominal separation. I readily dismissed my symptoms as something I just had to deal with.

After encouragement from my husband, I went into the GP in November of 2010 to discuss my abdomen, discomfort and symptoms. I was finally sent for blood tests, however, I was not informed what the blood tests were for. About 2 weeks later I received a letter in the post requesting that I make an appointment with my GP. At that appointment I was informed that my blood tests did indeed confirm that I tested positive for Coeliac disease. The GP was referring me to a consultant and I was scheduled for repeat blood tests. I was thrilled to learn that there was actually something medically wrong with me. It wasn’t all in my head! I started researching coeliac disease to learn more about what was in store for me but was advised to maintain my diet and not to begin a gluten-free diet until I was seen by the consultant.

A few weeks later I saw the consultant who further confirmed the coeliac disease diagnosis. She put me forward for a gastroscopy which occurred on 13 December, 2010. The day of the gastroscopy marked the last day that I consciously ate gluten. I began eating a gluten-free diet the following day and haven’t looked back. Adopting a gluten-free diet and lifestyle is not easy. For me, I felt suddenly deprived of most of the foods that I had enjoyed previously. Pasta, bread and fish & chips were staples in my diet. Despite the fact that they made me feel rubbish, I did thoroughly enjoy them and I went through a bit of grieving and detoxification in the first two weeks of my gluten-free diet.

Those first two weeks were a learning curve for me. Gluten seems to be everywhere! I registered with Coeliac UK, Dietary Specials, Juvela and Glutafin and have appreciated receiving materials, information and product samples. The Free-From sections of local grocery stores have given me a good start on the gluten-free path but I find the prices excessively high. This has encouraged me to re-evaluate my own kitchen and helped me to start cooking and adapting recipes to our gluten-free diet. My biggest challenge is in helping family to understand what I can and can’t eat and finding reasonable choices when dining out.

Perhaps one of the best results of adopting a gluten-free diet and lifestyle is that I have started to make much better food choices, I have begun to feel better physically and my abdomen is not as bloated as it once was. I have conveniently lost 6 pounds in the last 5 weeks and am exercising more. I have found a new energy for understanding and living with coeliac disease and am looking forward to sharing my experiences, tips and recipes with others.

To visit Karin’s blog, click here.

 

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Your Gluten-Free Resource…

By Chris Bennett | 21/06/2012 | Posted in Gluten Free Resource, Kitchen

We’re delighted to announce that as from today, we’re going to start to post a whole raft of information specifically for coeliac sufferers, individuals with gluten intolerance.

What is Coeliac Disease?

Coeliac disease (pronounced see-lee-ak, and sometimes spelt ‘celiac’) is often spoken about in terms of food allergies and food intolerances but is in fact an auto-immune disease.

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, barley. Eating foods containing gluten has a life-long damaging effect on the bowel. There is no miracle cure for coeliac disease. The treatment is a gluten-free diet for life.

Many people visiting their GP with unexplained symptoms may initially be diagnosed with “irritable bowel syndrome” (IBS) before further investigations reveal they are suffering from coeliac disease.

Experts researching the condition believe that the disease may affect as many as one person in every 100 with the majority of those undiagnosed.

The reason for us creating a section on ‘Home of the House Proud’ for coeliac sufferers is that we recognise that our range of breadmakers are great products for coeliac sufferers to use to create their own fresh loaves at home using gluten-free flour. We work closely with Juvela to help us gain a better understanding of the condition (the information above is taken from their website) and to develop bread recipes using their flour in our machines – a perfect combination!

Juvela Logo

‘Home of the House Proud’ is working with a couple of coeliac sufferers to help us develop recipes to share with you as well as their advice and experiences. The first person that we’d like to introduce to you is Carol Carpenter.

Carol Carpenter

Hello, my name’s Carol. I was diagnosed with Coeliac Disease in 1981 and have been on a gluten-free diet ever since as well as being involved with my local Coeliac Group.

Being a coeliac means I cannot eat anything that contains wheat, rye or barley. I love cooking and baking and am always trying out new ideas and converting ordinary recipes into gluten-free ones so that I can enjoy them with my family.

So, I have been using my Morphy Richards breadmaker and Juvela gluten-free mixes to make some delicious gluten-free breads, see recipes below:

Basic Recipe

  • Approx. 300ml (12fl oz) tepid water
  • 2tbsp vegetable or sunflower oil
  • 1tsp salt
  • 350g (14oz) Juvela gluten-free mix
  • 1tsp sugar
  • 2tsp easy blend dried yeast (measured from sachet supplied with Mix)

NB: If using the Juvela gluten-free fibre mix increase the water by approximately 25ml (1fl oz) to ensure a smooth dough.

Method

Place the water, oil and salt in the bread pan. Add the Mix and sprinkle in the sugar followed by the yeast

Place the bread pan in the breadmaker and select programme number 10

Once the mixing blade starts to mix, use a rubber/plastic spatula to incorporate any Mix from the sides of the pan

When the programme has finished remove from the pan, but be very careful as it will be extremely hot. The mixing blade may stay in the loaf, which is normal, so do take care when removing it. I find it’s better to leave the loaf to cool for 2 or 3 hours before trying to slice it (that’s if you can resist cutting the end crust off and eating it warm spread with a little butter!)

I then slice the loaf and place it in a plastic freezer bag before freezing – then you can just takeout the number of slices you need. Alternatively, the loaf will stay fresh for up to 4 days if wrapped well and stored in a cool, dry place.

To make a smaller or larger loaf, follow the basic recipe above and adjust the ingredients as follows:

Small Loaf (1lb)

  • Approx. 225ml (9fl oz) tepid water
  • 1tbsp vegetable or sunflower oil
  • 1tsp salt
  • 275g (11oz) Juvela gluten-free mix
  • 1 level tsp sugar and
  • 1½ level tsp dried yeast

NB: If using the Juvela gluten-free fibre mix, increase the water by approximately 25ml (1fl oz) to ensure a smooth dough.

Large Loaf (2lb)

  • Approx. 400ml (16fl oz) tepid water
  • 2tbsp vegetable or sunflower oil
  • 1½tsp salt, 500g packet Juvela gluten-free mix
  • 1½ tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp dried yeast

NB: If using the JUVELA Gluten-Free Fibre Mix, increase the the water by approximately 50ml (2fl oz) to ensure a smooth dough.

Savoury Variations

Try some of these tasty savoury alternatives to the basic recipe. If your instruction manual doesn’t indicate when to add extra ingredients you can add them once the breadmaker has started mixing the basic ingredients.

Olive and Herb

Add 75g (3oz) chopped olives and 2tsp mixed dried herbs. This makes a really delicious savoury bread.

Milk

Substitute all water (approx. 300ml/12fl oz) with milk. This makes the texture a little bit firmer in structure.

I will continue to make some more variations and keep you informed as to progress.

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